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Monday, July 7, 2014

Medication Management System: From pill box to a machines

Medication management is one of the most critical issues facing seniors who live independently. It is a real safety concern for those whose everyday health and wellbeing depend on taking the right dose of the right medication at the right time.
According to the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, more than one-third of medication-related hospitalizations are due to patients not taking their medicines as directed. Additionally, medication non-adherence has also been associated with as much as 40 percent of nursing home admissions, notes the American Pharmacists Association.

Medication management can be a pill box to a complex medication dispensing machine. Sometimes a person cannot manage a pill box due to eye sight or memory issues. This may be time to start to think about the dispenser or an aide to come in the home and make sure the right meds are taken.

When I am asked about dispensing machines the first question I ask is what does your loved one need? If I am told it is significant memory issue where the person is forgetting to take the meds I talk to the family about what the medication dispenser can do and what it cannot do.

What it cannot do is make sure those meds get into the mouth. It can send signal to the family if the dispensed meds are not picked up from machine but no family can be assured that if they meds are picked up they made it to person's mouth. Sometimes seniors will take the meds off dispenser go into another room sit the cup down and forget to take them. This behavior means you need an aide, a physical person to come into the room and watch the person take them.

If you have questions feel free to contact me. The medication dispenser is helpful but with all care we need to talk about what does the loved one really need. Often what we think will solve the problem does not. Talking it out we can come up with creative solution to solve the problem usually.

Friday, July 4, 2014

#HappyJuly4th wishing you and yours great holiday

Best wishes for safe and healthy July 4th weekend. Please remember our service men and women and their families. #thankyouveterans

Monday, June 30, 2014

Why am I always so cold?

As you grow older, you feel chilly -- or even downright cold -- more easily and more often. What causes this, and what does it mean for your overall health?
Chances are, your body is merely going through a natural dip in metabolic rate due to the aging process. A lowered metabolic rate affects the body's ability to maintain what is considered a normal temperature of 98.6 degrees. When metabolism slows, so does the body's ability to generate heat. This means seniors can become cold outdoors in the sun during summer or indoors in a well-heated room during winter.

 
There are other reasons a senior may be unduly cold. Encourage him to seek medical advice in order to properly diagnose the reason he is unable to stay warm. Hypothyroidism and cardiovascular disease are chronic medical conditions that affect body temperature. If an underlying medical condition is the reason for the senior's chills, help her take necessary steps to manage it accordingly. It is important to note that, regardless of the reason, the body's inability to stay warm can lead to hypothermia if body temperature reaches 95 degrees or below. Seniors in frail health are more susceptible to hypothermia, even when the room temperature is 71-75 degrees.

Whether being cold is the result of slowed metabolism or a medical condition, older adults must stay warm to maintain an appropriate body temperature. Nearly half of the elderly who develop hypothermia die from its effects. Therefore, we suggest that sweaters should be staples for both men and women. While he should not bundle up so much that he overheats, keeping a cozy blanket nearby helps a senior during times of low activity in the home. Encourage the senior to wear cap or scarf when going outdoors. Gloves are a must during cold months. Enjoy large meals during cold weather, as the digestive process generates heat within the body. Warm drinks such as hot chocolate can help. Avoid alcoholic beverages, as they cause the body to lose heat.

With a little education, one can determine which changes are parts of the natural aging process versus changes that may indicate an underlying condition that requires medical attention. The key to aging gracefully is knowing what changes seniors will experience as they age and how these changes affect the body. While you can't halt the aging process, you can be prepared.
This article taken from www.comfortkeepers.com
 

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Caregiver Support Group - Springfield PA free

Caregivers of the elderly aging loved ones senior citizens, Comfort Keepers offers a support group for adults who perform caregiving services to a senior citizen. A safe place to talk about the stressors related to caregiving and being a caregiver such as seniors resistant to showering, refusing to change clothes or perform personal hygiene tasks.
The Caregiver Support Group at Comfort Keepers in Springfield is free and open to the public to any adult who is a caregiver. The group meets the 2nd Tuesday of the month from 6pm to 7pm and is held at Comfort Keepers office located at: 920 W. Sproul Rd Springfield PA 19064. The office is located at corner of Sproul Rd (route 320) and State Rd south (route 1 bypass) in the McKee Plaza. The McKee Plaza has three office buildings and Comfort Keepers is in the middle building on Sproul Rd right before you turn to get on route 1 south bypass.
For more information or to rsvp for the group please call our office at 610-543-6300. There is no speaker at this meeting/group. It is a support group where individuals can attend and talk about the stressors of being a caregiver. Comfort Keepers staff facilitiates the group to start discussions and welcome people. This is not a therapy group or educational/speaker session. For more information Comfort Keepers services, please go click HERE.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Special Pension Aging Veterans - Get help in home if you qualify

Comfort Keepers® Is Honored to Serve Our Nation’s Veterans

Home Care for VeteransWe feel privileged to provide home care for veterans who served our nation in its time of need. We provide you with the information to work through the paperwork to help you avoid potential pension claim delays. Once you become an approved participant in a VA program, Comfort Keepers will provide the quality home care and companionship our veterans deserve. There are several veteran in-home care programs for which an individual may qualify:
  • Improved Pension Benefit Program
  • Homemaker/Home Health Aide Program
  • In-Home Respite Program

Who Qualifies?

If you or your spouse served 90 consecutive days of active military duty – at least one of those days during a U.S. declared war – you may qualify or be partially qualified.
Other qualifications include specific financial criteria and documented physical need for in-home care.
To begin the application process, you will need:
  • Original discharge certificate
  • Marriage certificate (divorce papers from any prior marriages, if applicable)
  • Death certificate of veteran (if applicable)
  • Social Security numbers for the veteran and spouse
If you think you may qualify for one of the VA programs, give Comfort Keepers in Springfield PA a call at 610-543-6300 or go to our website at www.comfortkeepers.com/office-326/ to get more information.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Adult Care: Help a Senior Stay at Home Longer with Day Care Services

Adult day care centers offer a dual solution. They help family caregivers who need a respite from caregiving responsibilities as they provide seniors health-promoting opportunities to socialize with other seniors.
Open during daytime hours, adult day care centers provide a safe, supportive environment for older adults who need assistance with independent living as they receive essential mental and social stimulation through the center's organized activities. At the same time, the centers offer family members peace of mind that their loved one is in good hands when they are involved with work or other responsibilities.
Adult day care centers promote well-being and quality of life by providing social and health-related services. They also offer nutritious meals and snacks to accommodate special diets.
Activities provided at adult day care centers may include:
  • Arts and crafts
  • Musical entertainment and singing
  • Games that provide mental stimulation
  • Exercise appropriate to ability
  • Local outings
  • Discussion and reminiscing
Some adult day care centers also coordinate programming with children to provide intergenerational opportunities for the seniors and children, and some have special programming for persons in the early stages of Alzheimer's disease and other dementia-related conditions.
Additional services provided by some centers include transportation to and from the center, counseling and support groups for caregivers, and health screening and monitoring services for the seniors.
According to the National Adult Day Services Association (NADSA)there are about 4,000 adult day care centers in the U.S. The growth in adult day care in the past 20 years has been driven by the tremendous growth in the nation's senior citizen population and seniors' increasing preference for in-home and community-based services over institutionally-based care.
Adult day care is appropriate for seniors who:
  • Are alone during the day while family members are at work or taking care of other responsibilities
  • Need companionship, social stimulation and functional assistance
  • Are physically or cognitively challenged but do not require 24-hour supervision
  • Are in the early stages of Alzheimer's disease.
  • Can not be safely left alone at home
Adult day care services are not covered by Medicare. However, Medicaid will assist with the costs of licensed adult day care for persons who have limited income and assets. Some centers offer services on a sliding fee scale, based on income.
Some private medical insurance policies cover a portion of adult day care costs when licensed medical professionals are involved in the care. In addition, some long-term care insurance may pay for adult day care services, and dependent-care tax credits may be available to caregivers in some cases.
This article taken from www.comfortkeepers.com

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Mission and Philosophy: what is yours?

Do you have a mission and/or philosophy for you life? Most companies like Comfort Keepers have one but do you have one?

The mission of all Comfort Keepers® locations is to deliver high-quality in-home care services that enable seniors and other clients to enjoy the highest level of independence and quality of life achievable, in the comfort of their own homes.
In doing so, we care for each client with the respect and dignity we would provide members of our own families. In fact, many of our independent owners have been drawn to Comfort Keepers as a result of their own experiences in caring for a loved one.
We provide our services within the framework of our distinctive approach to in-home care, Interactive Caregiving, which heightens our clients' enjoyment of life physically, mentally, and emotionally.

Mission and philosophy helps to guide employees, can it guide a person in his or her life? In this day and age many life coaches and professionals are suggesting that everyone have a mission for his or life. It's never too late to start if you want to have one.

What are your thoughts? Would you want to have a mission and/or philosophy or not?